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Entries with the tag: tim thomas

It’s Tuukka Time in Boston

For the Boston Bruins, it has certainly been a strange past two seasons, especially when it comes to netminding.

When the 2010-11 season began, many folks in the media and fans alike felt that Bruins' netminder Tuukka Rask would be the starting goaltender for the team. This was mostly based upon the fact that Rask was terrific in 2009-10 when he went 22-12-5 with a 1.97 goals against average, a .931 save percentage and 5 shutouts.

Unfortunately for Rask, he got off to a slow start in 2010-11 and the starting goaltender position went back to Tim Thomas, who ended up having a season to remember for his hockey club. In the regular season, Thomas went 35-11-9 with a 2.00 goals against average, a .938 save percentage, and 9 shutouts en route to winning the Vezina Trophy as the league's best netminder in the regular season.

Of course, Thomas then had a postseason to remember. Thomas led the Bruins to their first Stanley Cup in 39 years and won the Conn Smythe Trophy as the league's most valuable player in the postseason.

For Rask, this meant a lot of time riding the bench and playing every once in awhile. When he did play last season, Rask was solid in winning 11 games, posting a 2.05 goals against average, stopped .929 of the shotes he faced and picked up 3 shutouts.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, tim+thomas, tuukka+rask

Rangers Can Clinch Tonight in Philly

If there was ever a chance for the New York Rangers to upset the Philadelphia Flyers and their fans, tonight is the perfect opportunity.

Tonight, the Blueshirts will take on the Flyers in Philadelphia and should the Rangers win, they will clinch both the top spot in the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference. While the Flyers really had no chance at either, it will still more than likely be a bit of a snipe at both the team and its fans.

The Flyers are coming off an emotional and hard-hitting 6-4 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins. There was a bunch of fisticuffs, including one that resulted in Flyers’ head coach Peter Laviolette being fined $10,000 due to his spat with Penguins’ assistant coach Tony Granato.

The Rangers’ are coming off a 2-1 loss to the Boston Bruins. It was a game in which the Rangers’ could have won if not for the great effort of Bruins’ netminder Tim Thomas.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, new+york+rangers, peter+laviolette, philadelphia+flyers, pittsburgh+penguins, tim+thomas, tony+granato

Rangers Can’t Find Tying Goal in 2-1 Loss to the Bruins

With a chance to clinch first place in both the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference last night at Madison Square Garden against the Boston Bruins, the New York Rangers could not find the equalizer in the third period in a 2-1 loss.

The Blueshirts fired 19 shots at Bruins’ netminder Tim Thomas in the third period but Thomas turned them all aside. The Bruins’ battling goaltender finished the game with 33 saves and even Rangers’ head coach John Tortorella said that Thomas was the difference in the hockey game.

This felt like a playoff game for both clubs. There was lots of hitting, lots of blocked shots, and timely goal scoring in what could end up being a playoff match-up later on in the spring.

The loss snapped the Rangers’ four game winning streak as well as chance to clinch the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference. On the other side, the Bruins clinched their third Northeast Division title in the last four years with the victory and will end up facing the No. 7 team in the conference in the first round.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, john+tortorella, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, pittsburgh+penguins, tim+thomas

Rangers Win Wild One Against Bruins

Going into the afternoon tilt, one probably thought it was going to be a defensive battle for 60 minutes.

Instead, 7 goals were scored with the New York Rangers coming out on top over the Boston Bruins by a score of 4-3. It was not easy but the Rangers did what they had to do to win.

For starters, the team was able to get two big ones in the first period on goals by Ruslan Fedotenko and Carl Hagelin. The goals came 1:10 apart as the team took advantage of a somewhat tired Bruins hockey club coming off a 3-2 loss to the New York Islanders yesterday afternoon at the TD Garden.

However, Bruins’ head coach Claude Julien called a timeout after the second Blueshirts’ goal and did not say a word. Sometimes, silence really is golden.

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  Tags: benoit+pouliot, boston+bruins, carl+hagelin, claude+julien, dennis+seidenberg, derek+stepan, henrik+lundqvist, jordan+caron, marian+gaborik, michael+del+zotto, new+jersey+devils, new+york+islanders, new+york+rangers, pittsburgh+penguins, ruslan+fedotenko, tim+thomas

The “King” of NHL’s Masked Men

When it comes to the Vezina Trophy, which is awarded to the NHL’s best goaltender after every season, there is one netminder who has been up for it three times and has yet to win.

With the way this particular goaltender is playing right now, fate might have a different answer for him come near the end of June. Of course, I am talking about New York Rangers’ goaltender Henrik Lundqvist.

The 29-year-old netminder has simply been outstanding for the Blueshirts this season. In 28 games, the “King” is 17-7-4 with a 1.92 goals against average (GAA), a .937 save percentage and 3 shutouts.

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  Tags: brian+elliot, henrik+lundqvist, jimmy+howard, jonathan+quick, new+york+rangers, tim+thomas

Something to Debate on Tim Thomas?

With the Hockey Hall of Fame announcing its inductees today, I figured now would be a good time to bring up a topic that will more than likely spark up a debate both amongst hockey fans and hockey media.

When all is said and done, will Boston Bruins’ netminder Tim Thomas be a candidate to get inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame? This is something that is going to be debated by the hockey media and fans alike since Thomas completed one heck of a season in the National Hockey League this year.

Thomas was the netminder to beat this season as he won the Vezina Trophy as the league’s top goaltender, the Conn Smythe Trophy as the league’s best player in the Stanley Cup Playoffs and the ultimate trophy in the sport, the Stanley Cup. Easily a goaltender’s dream season, eh?

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  Tags: boston+bruins, tim+thomas

Why Thomas Should be the Conn Smythe Winner

When all is said and done with the Stanley Cup Final between the Boston Bruins and Vancouver Canucks, the Conn Smythe Trophy as the league’s best player in the playoffs should go to Bruins’ 37-year-old netminder Tim Thomas.

Win or lose, Thomas has been by far and away the best player in this series, which is surprising considering that other big players that are involved in this series such as the Sedin twins, Ryan Kesler, Patrice Bergeron, Roberto Luongo, David Krejci and more. With that said however, there should be no doubt when all is said and done.

Looking at Thomas’s numbers in this series, he has gone above and beyond in between the pipes. He is 2-3 with a goals against average of under 2 and a save percentage hovering around 97 percent.

In each game of the series, Thomas has been the best player on the ice not only for the Bruins’, but between the two clubs as well. Sure, there have been some other players in this series who have stepped up but none have stepped up to the degree that Thomas has.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, tim+thomas

Bruins Headed to Finals For the First Time Since 1990

Many Boston Bruins fans’ probably feel like this was a long time coming but for the first time since the 1989-90 season, the Bruins are headed to the Stanley Cup Finals after defeating the Tampa Bay Lightning by a score of -0 in Game 7 at the TD Garden.

This Game 7 had it all. For starters, the game had terrific saves from both Bruins’ goaltender Tim Thomas and Lightning netminder Dwayne Roloson. Roloson did everything he possibly could to give his team a chance to win a hockey game but unfortunately for him, the Lightning were not able to help out on the scoreboard.

Thomas was also solid in picking up the huge victory. He kept things simple, made the big save when his team needed to and of course, ended up with the W.

This game also had lots of guts displayed by both teams. Bruins’ forward Nathan Horton took a nasty shoulder hit in the first period but returned in the second period and scored the game winning goal in the third period.

On the Lightning side, Lightning forward Steven Stamkos took a puck to the nose in the second period. With a huge gash on his nose and with the nose most likely displaced on his face, Stamkos returned and showed what heart and guts he has as a hockey player.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, dwayne+roloson, nathan+horton, steven+stamkos, tampa+bay+lightning, tim+thomas, vancouver+canucks

A Quick Observation

Looking at the four starting goaltenders for the remaining teams in the Stanley Cup Playoffs, it is easy to see that a few of them have had trouble handling the puck in the Conference Finals’ series.

In Game 1 against the San Jose Sharks, Vancouver Canucks’ goaltender Roberto Luongo put a pass right on Joe Thornton’s stick and Thornton than put it past a diving Luongo to give his team a 1-0 lead.

In Game 4 against the Lightning, there was a miscommunication between Bruins’ netminder Tim Thomas and Bruins’ defenseman Zdeno Chara that led to Lightning forward Teddy Purcell’s first goal of the game. Had Thomas just moved it away from Chara, the play would have been over and done with and the Bruins would have more than likely gotten out of their own end.

In that same game, there was miscommunication between Lightning goaltender Dwayne Roloson and his defenseman, leading Bruins’ forward Patrice Bergeron to to wrap the puck around the net and put it through Roloson’s legs to give his team a then 1-0 lead.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, dwayne+roloson, joe+thornton, roberto+luongo, san+jose+sharks, tampa+bay+lightning, tim+thomas, vancouver+canucks, zdeno+chara

Nice to See Some Scoring

As I am sure many of you folks are, I am watching Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals between the Boston Bruins and Tampa Bay Lightning and it’s great to see some scoring, isn’t it?

Many pundits and fans alike predicted that because of the goaltending and defensive systems, this was going to be a low scoring series. Well, here we are at the end of the first period and it is 3-1 Lightning at the end of the first period in Boston.

Tim Thomas, although he cannot be faulted for all three of the goals, has not looked comfortable in between the pipes for the Bruins thus far so it’ll be interesting to see how he plays in the second period. On the other end, while Tyler Seguin’s goal, his first career NHL playoff goal in his first career NHL playoff game, was a beauty, it was a shot that Lightning goaltender Dwayne Roloson might have been able to stop.

These teams both have guys that can put the puck in the net and both have guys that will go hard to the net for deflections, rebounds and loose pucks. The Lightning certainly showed that in the first period.

The puck, no matter how good Thomas and Roloson, will go in the net plenty of times this series. You’ll see.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, dwayne+roloson, tampa+bay+lightning, tim+thomas, tyler+seguin

A Brief Look at Two Warriors

I’m obviously talking about the upcoming “battle” between Boston Bruins’ goaltender Tim Thomas and Tampa Lightning netminder Dwayne Roloson.

With Thomas at 37 years old and Roloson 41 years of age, it will be a battle between two goaltenders who are looking to win their first Stanley Cup. Roloson had a good crack at it back in 2006 when he was between the pipes for the Edmonton Oilers until he got injured in Game 1 and never returned to the crease.

Both of these goaltenders are similar when it comes to playing styles. When looking at Thomas, it is easy to say that he is the modern day Dominik Hasek. He may not have Hasek’s stature but what he does have is a terrific compete-level and a willing to do whatever he can to stop the puck. One can easily see this when looking back at some of Thomas’s highlight saves from this past season.

Looking at Roloson, it is almost the same thing. He never gives up on a play but unlike Thomas, Roloson seems to be more of a positional goaltender. Yes, he lunges at pucks sometimes but after making the first save, he usually finds himself in good enough position to make a save on the rebound as well.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, dwayne+roloson, tampa+bay+lightning, tim+thomas

Tim Thomas is for Real

In their new heritage jerseys, the New York Rangers came out and played a pretty good hockey game despite losing to Tim Thomas and the Boston Bruins by a score of 3-2.

The Bruins’ netminder Tim Thomas was terrific in this game in making 34 saves. He was especially good in the third period as the Rangers outshot the Bruins 16-5 but were only able to put one goal by him, which came off the stick of Marian Gaborik.

After playing through an injury last season, Thomas has come back this season and is playing like the Vezina Trophy winner he was in 2009. He looks fast, is seeing the puck well, is giving many second and third efforts to stop pucks and is winning hockey games for his hockey club. With the win, Thomas is now 10-1 so if there are any Thomas doubters out there, one would think that they are singing a different tune right now.

Thomas and the B’s managed to kill off a 5-on-3 Blueshirt power play with less than five minutes to go in the game. He made an unbelievable save on Ryan Callahan and after that save, the Bruins’ settled down and shut the door on the Rangers for the victory.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, david+krejci, marc+savard, marco+sturm, new+york+rangers, tim+thomas

Rangers Get it Done in Pittsburgh

Going into last night’s game against the Pittsburgh Penguins at the Consol Energy Center, New York Rangers’ goaltender Henrik Lundqvist knew that he would have to be at his best.

He was just that last night for the Blueshirts who escaped Pittsburgh with a 3-2 overtime victory on a goal by Ryan Callahan off a great move and pass from Brandon Dubinsky. It was a game that would test the Rangers’ mettle and while not passing with straight A’s, they were able to pick up two points.

As I mentioned above, this game was all about Lundqvist. Lundqvist made 37 saves in stopping the likes of Evgeni Malkin, Sidney Crosby, Kris Letang, and others. He was lass than three minutes away from a shutout until Chris Kunitz tied the game up at 1-1 and then Matt Cooke made it 2-1.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, brandon+dubinsky, henrik+lundqvist, marc+staal, new+york+rangers, pittsburgh+penguins, ryan+callahan, tim+thomas

Thomas Accepts Responsibility for Struggles

From friend of the blog James Murphy at NESN.com:

Thomas, who is usually front and center right after every game, win or lose, was uncharacteristically nowhere to be found. While the Bruins lost a game they seemed to have within their grasp, blowing a 1-0 lead after two periods, Thomas had nothing to hide from. After all, he was one of the few bright spots, making 35 saves, and with the exception of losing track of tricky shot by Flyers defenseman Kimmo Timonen, positioned him and his team to have a chance to win.

Finally, one of the Bruins’ staff members told the media that Thomas wouldn’t be speaking. Yet just as the horde of waiting reporters began to head toward the dressing room exit, out came Thomas waving them back and saying he would talk. No reason was given for the wait, but Thomas wanted to discuss the game just as he does every game and basically anytime he’s requested for an interview.

“That’s my job,” he said. “Sorry for the delay.”

As he stood there addressing the media scrum around him, he acknowledged that he isn’t where he needs to be at this point in the season and that right now he is battling to get back into the form that earned him the Vezina Trophy last season. Thomas said he is taking a day-by-day approach, trying to not get too high or too low.

“I’m just trying to build every day, and trying to get a lot better every day,” Thomas said. “I’m trying to get back to the level I was at last season. So that’s just my focus on a day-to-day basis.”

Click here for more. Thomas had a great season last year and just hasn’t been himself this season. However, let’s not forget the kind of person he is and remember that he is a great guy to stand up for.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, tim+thomas

Well Deserved for Thomas

When Boston Bruins netminder Tim Thomas first came into the National Hockey League, I thought he looked like Gump Worsley in goal - and this wasn’t based on playing ability either.

However, after back-to-back successful seasons in beantown, I see Thomas as someone who never gives up, makes the second and third saves, and personifies everything it means to be a Boston Bruin. This is why it was so nice to see Timmy win the Vezina Trophy as the league’s top goaltender because it shows that executives around the NHL are taking notice that Thomas is more than a bonafied NHL netminder - he’s the real deal, even at the age of 35.

I believe that this will springboard Thomas to have another fine season in 2009-2010 and will even help him garner consideration to be Team USA’s starting netminder at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. What do you folks think?

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  Tags: boston+bruins, tim+thomas

What A Difference a Year Makes

It’s amazing how much things change over the course of a year in the National Hockey League. A perfect example of this would be the Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens, who will meet tonight for Game one of the first round in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

About a year ago, these teams met in the first round of the playoffs but compared to this season, the roles were reversed as the Bruins now have the No. 1 seed while the Habs have the No. 8 seed. That’s not the only difference:

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  Tags: alex+kovalev, bob+gainey, boston+bruins, carey+price, guy+carbonneau, montreal+canadiens, nhl, phil+kessel, tim+thomas

Mike Ross of NHL Home Ice: Spreading the Word About Hockey

As we all know, hockey is a fledgling sport in the U.S. It doesn’t get the coverage it deserves and when it does press, it’s usually for something negative (ahem, Sean Avery).

However, one radio channel/network that steps up when it comes to hockey coverage is XM’s NHL Home Ice Channel. Day in and day out, the channel provides great hockey content to fans all over the world and always has them coming back for more.

Recently, I had the opportunity to do an e-mail interview with one of the channel’s hosts and producers, Mike Ross. “Rossy” tells us about how he fell in love with the game, how he got involved in hockey radio, the channel’s future, this season’s surprises/disappointments and of course, his Stanley Cup predicition.

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  Tags: adam+proteau, barry+melrose, boston+bruins, brian+duff, canadiens, dean+brown, gord+wilson, len+barrier, manny+fernandez, maple+leafs, mats+naslund, mike+ross, milan+lucic, oren+koules, patrick+marleau, phil+esposito, phil+kessel, rick+vaive, rocket+richard, san+jose+sharks, sean+avery, steve+lloyd, tampa+bay+lightning, the+hockey+news, tim+thomas, todd+mclellan, vincent+damphousse, wayne+gretzky, xm+nhl+home+ice

An Interview with Seth Rorabaugh of Empty Netters

Good evening folks. For your reading pleasure, please check out the interview I did with Seth Rorabaugh, the Post-Gazette’s Pittsburgh Penguins blogger.

Seth was kind of enough to take time out of his hectic schedule to tell us about how he got into hockey, how he got his start as a hockey journalist, his thoughts of the future of hockey blogs and his prediction on who this year’s Stanley Cup Finals representatives will be.

Enjoy!

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  Tags: alex+goligoski, empty+netters, frank+pieterangelo, kevin+stevens, kris+letang, larry+murphy, mario+lemieux, mark+eaton, patrick+roy, pittsburgh+penguins, ryan+whitney, sergei+fedorov, sergei+gonchar, seth+rorabaugh, steve+yzerman, tim+cheveldae, tim+thomas, ulf+samuelsson

True Test for the Blueshirts

Just over a month into the season, the New York Rangers will have their toughest test of the young regular season campaign tonight at Madison Square Garden: the Boston Bruins.

The Bruins are just three points behind the Blueshirts and are coming off an impressive 6-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens. They’ve gotten strong play from guys like Phil Kessel (7 goals), former Ranger Marc Savard (17 points) and from their netminder Tim Thomas, who has a goals-against average of under two goals per game and a save percentage that is close to 95 percent.

It should also be noted that the B’s are tied for the fewest goals allowed, something that could impact the Rangers tonight who typically don’t score a lot of goals on Garden ice.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, chris+drury, henrik+lundqvist, lauri+korpikoski, michal+rozsival, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, nikolai+zherdev, phil+kessel, tim+thomas

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